The Texans practiced Friday at the Methodist Training Center and after, head coach Gary Kubiak and some players answered questions from the media. The following is a transcript of their respective interviews.
Head coach Gary Kubiak
Wide receiver Andre Johnson
Punter Matt Turk
Head Coach Gary Kubiak
(on the injury updates) "Andre will be out, guys. He will not play this week. I told you guys he worked in the pool yesterday. He's made progress this week. Made a decision this morning just to leave him in there and continue to work him, so we'll go back in the next week and see where we're at. Timmy (Bulman) will be a game-time decision. (Lawrence) Vickers is fine. (Brian) Cushing is fine. Other than that, ready to go. Kevin Walter missed practice today. He's sick, so hopefully he'll be okay."
(on how much the physical play of the cornerbacks has helped) "Well, they have to be able to tackle. We're a big man-coverage team. We play a lot of quarters where they've got to come up and support the run and do some things. It's very important, but we ask everybody to be physical on our football team and those two guys have done a good job as well. That's important across the board, not just at corner."
(on CBs Johnathan Joseph and Kareem Jackson playing physical all year long) "Well, like I said, I'm going to go back to the group. It's been important that the group's physical. I don't know if corners set the tone for physical play on a defense. It usually starts up front, but these guys have a job to do and that ball comes to the edge and it's important if they don't do it, then you got big runs. We've been pretty dang good against the run all year long, so you got to give them credit. They've done their job. They turned the ball in and stepped up in there when they had to."
(on if CB Johnathan Joseph has been better than expected this season) "Well, he's been everything we thought he would be and more. The thing I've been so impressed with, we knew he was a great player, but the leadership he's brought to this team, the stability with all those young guys back there. He's such a pro and them watching him work has just helped GQ (Glover Quin), it's helped Brice (McCain), it's helped all those guys. He and (Danieal) D-Manning not only deserve a lot of credit of how they've played, but the leadership they've brought to the football team."
(on if he feels better about QB Jake Delhomme playing this week, if needed) "Yeah, he's got two weeks under his belt, so his package from what he can handle going into the game has grown from week to week. Jake's done a good job. He's played in a lot of games. He still throws the ball extremely well. It has been good to get Jeff (Garcia) in here also because at least we're working with two guys now for our next problem, so to speak, and not having to start over. I'm glad that we did that."
(on the job defensive backs coach Vance Joseph has done with the secondary) "Yeah, you don't have enough time. Just look at where we were last year and what's going on this year, the job that he's done. Obviously, we've gotten some help with some players, two key players back there. That's been a big thing, but the job he's done with the group as a whole, they've all contributed to the cause this year, Jason (Allen), Kareem (Jackson), all these guys. So, he's done a hell of a job."
(on what defensive backs coach Vance Joseph does specifically that makes him so good) "He's obviously a great teacher because we didn't have an offseason and how much progress he's made with that group. That starts with (defensive coordinator) Wade (Phillips), but it funnels down throug
h all those coaches, (linebackers coach) Reggie (Herring) and VJ and (assistant head coach/defensive line) Bill (Kollar). They've been able to catch up very, very fast in what they're doing. Vance is just a great communicator and he's excellent on the field and preparing those guys to play."
(on if he has any concerns with WR Kevin Walter missing practice) "Well, any time you're sick and can't make it out here, especially Kevin, it takes a lot to keep Kevin off the field, so until we get to tomorrow mo
rning and he tells me he's ready to go, yeah, I'm a little bit concerned. But I know Kevin. He'll do everything he can to get there and I know playing back in Cincinnati is always big for him, but we'll see what happens."
WR Andre Johnson
(on not being able to play this week) "Well, I knew I wouldn't be able to play this week, so that's pretty much it. Just rehabbing, doing some of the things I've been doing. I ran a little bit today on the treadmill and just working to get back to where I can be able to play."
(on how disappointing the injury is) "It's very disappointing. You work your butt off to get back after missing six games and then to have something like this to happen again is very frustrating. But at the same time, the team's in a great position and I'm just trying to do everything I can to get back, so that I can get back out on the field and play."
(on if he will be able to play next week) "I don't know. It's a day-by-day thing. Like I said before, it's not as bad as it was the previous injury I had. We're just taking it day-by-day."
(on if it's frustrating that he won't play in the game where the team may clinch the division) "You definitely would like to be a part of it, be out there playing, but things happen. There's a reason why these things happen and that's just the way I look at it. Something positive will come from it."
(on what it will mean to him for the team to win the AFC South) "It will mean a lot. It's just something we've been working towards since I've been here. Of course, I'd like to be out on the field playing, but you know I won't, so I'll be there on the sidelines cheering and hopefully we can get it wrapped up this weekend."
P Matt Turk
(on what it's like to be back) "It's a blessing to be back. It really is a dream come true."
(on what it's like to be part of a team that's making a playoff push) "Obviously exciting. From the first day I stepped in the locker room, it's a different vibe. It's a different feeling. It's a different team, really, and I'm just excited that I can be a part of it."
(on what he's been doing for the past month) "I've been just working out. I hadn't kicked a ball since the fifth week of the season. I had just been training, working out and in my mind, I kind of was going to be going at it next season, wondering if I was going to get into a camp next year. I really hadn't thought that anything was going to happen this year. I was watching the game live and I saw Brett (Hartmann) go down and I was thinking, 'Oh my gosh. That looks serious.' So, I got up, went to the gym, got warmed up and stretched and started swinging my leg a little bit and thought, well, if it's meant to be, it will be."
(on how he's been punting this week in practice) "The leg feels strong, a little rusty to be honest with you, but I feel pretty good."
(on holding for K Neil Rackers) "Yeah, that felt as natural as anything getting back there behind (Jon) Weeks and know how Neil likes the ball. That came back pretty quick."
(on how much he's kept up with the Texans this season) "I've been watching them since opening day. I still have a lot of really good friends on this team and I love Houston. This is our home and I love the Texans. I've been watching them and praying for them and somehow, some way, I ended up back here."